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Deep Monsters of Collage

– Posted in: Aesthetics Collage & Montage Creativity Digital Art Digital Collage Inspiration Surrealism Wood Engravings Wordless Wednesday


Found selling for $2 in a small secondhand bookstore in New England: a charming volume from 1876, titled The Monsters of the Deep.

Inside, over seventy engravings: showing everything from sea devils to sea serpents to sea wolves; from octopuses to giant squids to the Kraken; and from Neptune to Triton to Siren.

Whales and bears abound. Here, too, are monk seals and bishop seals, sun fish and moon fish, and turtles galore.  No shortage of sharks here, either.

Deep Monster (2012). Digital collage created & copyright © by Eric Edelman. All rights reserved.

One monster is absent, however: Leviathan. Leviathan comes from the Hebrew word  לִוְיָתָן (Livyatan), meaning “twisted,” “coiled,” or rather grandly, “that which gathers itself together in folds.”

The Bible (Job 41:1-34) has this to say about Leviathan:

1Canst thou draw out leviathan with an hook? or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down?
2Canst thou put an hook into his nose? or bore his jaw through with a thorn?
3Will he make many supplications unto thee? will he speak soft words unto thee?
4Will he make a covenant with thee? wilt thou take him for a servant for ever?
5Wilt thou play with him as with a bird? or wilt thou bind him for thy maidens?
6Shall the companions make a banquet of him? shall they part him among the merchants?
7Canst thou fill his skin with barbed irons? or his head with fish spears?
8Lay thine hand upon him, remember the battle, do no more.
9Behold, the hope of him is in vain: shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him?
10None is so fierce that dare stir him up: who then is able to stand before me?
11Who hath prevented me, that I should repay him? whatsoever is under the whole heaven is mine.
12I will not conceal his parts, nor his power, nor his comely proportion.
13Who can discover the face of his garment? or who can come to him with his double bridle?
14Who can open the doors of his face? his teeth are terrible round about.
15His scales are his pride, shut up together as with a close seal.
16One is so near to another, that no air can come between them.
17They are joined one to another, they stick together, that they cannot be sundered.
18By his neesings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning.
19Out of his mouth go burning lamps, and sparks of fire leap out.
20Out of his nostrils goeth smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron.
21His breath kindleth coals, and a flame goeth out of his mouth.
22In his neck remaineth strength, and sorrow is turned into joy before him.
23The flakes of his flesh are joined together: they are firm in themselves; they cannot be moved.
24His heart is as firm as a stone; yea, as hard as a piece of the nether millstone.
25When he raiseth up himself, the mighty are afraid: by reason of breakings they purify themselves.
26The sword of him that layeth at him cannot hold: the spear, the dart, nor the habergeon.
27He esteemeth iron as straw, and brass as rotten wood.
28The arrow cannot make him flee: slingstones are turned with him into stubble.
29Darts are counted as stubble: he laugheth at the shaking of a spear.
30Sharp stones are under him: he spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire.
31He maketh the deep to boil like a pot: he maketh the sea like a pot of ointment.
32He maketh a path to shine after him; one would think the deep to be hoary.
33Upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear.
34He beholdeth all high things: he is a king over all the children of pride.

Deep Monster #3 (2012). Digital collage created & copyright © by Eric Edelman. All rights reserved.

It is said that at the end of time,  the Almighty will slay Leviathan, along with the land monster Behemoth, and serve them both as food to the blessed in heaven. Small wonder then that Leviathan makes himself scarce now, while he practices his getaway.

Deep Monster #2 (2012).Digital collage created & copyright © by Eric Edelman. All rights reserved.

  All artwork, descriptions, & other text (except for quotations) created & copyright © by Eric Edelman. All rights reserved.

66 Comments… add one

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66 comments… add one
Carolyn February 28, 2012, 8:26 pm

Cool–LOVE the graphics! happy w/w!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 8:35 pm

Thanks, Carolyn–Happy WW to you also!

Yum Chicken Mushroom Burger February 28, 2012, 8:29 pm

Happy Wordless Wednesday!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 9:12 pm

And a happy WW to you!

EdT. February 28, 2012, 8:30 pm

I love the colors in those images – the top one seems to shimmer as I scroll up and down!

Happy WW!


Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 8:44 pm

Thanks! I’m glad you like it. I noticed (for the first time, I think) that the top one seems almost transparent; and that, coupled with the horizontal shading lines, makes it seem to shimmer like grosgrain ribbon when it’s scrolled up and down.

Mitch February 28, 2012, 8:33 pm

I love this week!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 8:46 pm

Thanks, Mitch!

princesscj haven February 28, 2012, 8:36 pm

visiting from.. WW.. 🙂

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 9:14 pm

Have a great WW!

Eggs (linky) February 28, 2012, 8:37 pm

Happy WW! I am inviting you come and be part of my blog hop:

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 9:14 pm

Happy WW to you as well! I’m on my way…

SprungAtLast February 28, 2012, 8:50 pm

That is very cool!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 8:58 pm

Thanks very much!

Carol @ Always Thyme to Cook February 28, 2012, 9:22 pm

I love your art this week, such colorful creatures! Very cool. Have a great week!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 11:22 pm

Thanks so much, Carol! I really appreciate your kind words. Hope you have a great week, too!

Meet Ginger February 28, 2012, 9:24 pm

Very Colorful. Thanks for linking up on Wordless Wednesday.

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 11:29 pm

Thanks! Glad you like them. Going to visit your site now…Have a great WW!

Sukhmandir Kaur February 28, 2012, 10:20 pm

I tried reading the bible through as a kid and took plenty of bible classes even worked for the bible teacher but this is new ( yeah finally something 🙂 not too keen on Leviathan served up for dinner though doesn’t go well with my rawfood vegan diet LOL The engravings collages are very cool though, a real feast for the eyes!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 11:23 pm

Thanks very much! Yes, I agree with you: Leviathan or Behemoth would not sit well as a dinner for me, even if I were in heaven!

Theresa February 28, 2012, 10:41 pm

I think this is my favorite WW I have seen yet today! Very cool!

Eric Edelman February 28, 2012, 11:24 pm

Thanks very much, Theresa! That’s very nice of you to say. Have a great WW!

alissa apel February 28, 2012, 11:47 pm

I love all the bright colors and the subject matter!

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 3:01 am

Thanks very much, Alissa!

Simply Delicious February 29, 2012, 12:22 am

How cool!

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 2:58 am

Thanks for your kind comment and your visit!

Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly February 29, 2012, 2:34 am

Wordless Wednesday’s really should not be done on an empty stomach. These pictures have made me want an Octopus Seafood Salad! I’m calling my Aunt after this, her Octopus Salad is the best! 😉

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 3:54 am

Bon appétit–and thanks for stopping by!

Danielle @Royalegacy February 29, 2012, 2:42 am

Very interesting.

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 3:55 am


PippaD @ A Mothers Ramblings (W linky) February 29, 2012, 2:49 am

I wonder if Leviathan and Behemoth taste like Chicken…

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 2:57 am

You’ll have to wait till the Last Day to find out, Pippa!

Orthodontrepreneur {LINKY} February 29, 2012, 3:10 am

Linking up for WW

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 3:55 am

Thanks for the link!

Verena February 29, 2012, 3:40 am

Wow, you are very talented!
Have a wonderful WW!
Viele Grüße aus Deutschland,

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 4:00 am

Ich sehe, Sie haben schon Frühling in Deutschland, Verena! Vielen Dank für Ihre freundlichen Worte. Ich hoffe, Sie haben ein sehr gutes wortlose Mittwoch!

Mit herzlichen Grüßen aus Amerika,


Jessica @peekababy February 29, 2012, 4:49 am

What a cool octopus! I wonder if he knows he’s living in a rainbow, lol

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 9:56 am

Well, if he didn’t before, he sure does now! Thanks for your visit and your commment!

tina´s ww w/ linky February 29, 2012, 5:55 am

cool! it´s not easy for me to let comments on your blog. i´m always thrown out 🙁

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 10:08 am

Ich entschuldige mich, dass es so schwierig ist es, Kommentare zu meiner Website verlassen. Ich arbeite an einer Lösung des Problems arbeitet jetzt. Vielen Dank für Ihre freundliche Kompliment!

Monica February 29, 2012, 6:47 am

Cool pictures and I really like the bright colours!

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 10:10 am

Thanks very much for stopping by to leave such a kind comment! I’m glad you like it.

The BOAT w/LINKY February 29, 2012, 8:53 am

Pretty cool

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 10:16 am

Thanks for stopping by and for your comment!

Erika February 29, 2012, 8:55 am

What an amazing book to find, Eric – love what you have done with those old engravings! Now wondering what Leviathan & Behemoth stew might taste like, though I’m guessing (hoping?) they’re served up in a more sacrificial sense – somehow it just wouldn’t seem right if evil beings tasted good 🙂

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 10:52 am

Thanks for your kind comment, Erika! Yes, it is some cause for speculation. According to some sources, Leviathan and Behemoth weren’t evil at all: the Creator made them originally as part of a check-and-balance system to limit the arrogance of other creatures (like man). And the passage I quoted from Job is actually quite complimentary of Leviathan. The Almighty sounds pretty proud of his creation! (Some more background I’ve dug up: in the “Beginning,” there were two Leviathans, male and female; however, the Creator realized that if the Leviathans were allowed to breed, they would quickly overrun the Earth and wipe out all other creatures, so the female Leviathan was destroyed–why is it always the females who get it on the chin?) As for how Leviathan would taste: not terribly like chicken, I’d imagine! Perhaps rather fishy.

William Blake did a wonderful etching or engraving of Leviathan and Behemoth being served up on platters, presumably to the just; you can probably find it by searching Google Images.

The book was one of those once-in-a-lifetime finds that one pounces on immediately (imagine that such a book cost less than ₤1!). And the engravings in it have been lots of fun to work with. They’ve provided material for my very first digital collage in color, as well as the examples you see here. (I don’t like some of the scans I originally did, so I may re-scan them.)

Again, thanks so much for your interest!

Carrie @ Our Full House February 29, 2012, 10:52 am

Amazing drawings. Thanks for sharing.

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 10:56 am

Thanks! They’re more collages than drawings, but I appreciate your compliment.

LUCKYLADY February 29, 2012, 12:56 pm

I love wordless wednesday, always to fun to find a picture that tells a story on its own

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:50 am

Thanks for your comment and your visit–hope you had a great WW!

Will February 29, 2012, 3:21 pm

A bargain at 2.00 for sure! Happy WW! We are losing so many of those small bookstores here.

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:47 am

Happy WW to you as well. Yes, definitely one of the greatest book-buying bargains I’ve ever gotten. A shame about the small bookstores going under; the Internet, smart phones, and e-books are partly to blame for that.

aquariann February 29, 2012, 3:43 pm

What an amazing book to find!! Vibrantly wonderful collages.

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:40 am

Thanks for the kind words, Aquariann! I’m glad you like the collages.

CARMEN February 29, 2012, 5:23 pm

Very funny! :)) and very cool!
Happy WW! 🙂

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:35 am

Thanks, Carmen! I’m glad you like the post.

Paula J February 29, 2012, 5:46 pm

Wow Eric what beautiful work!! Soooo colorful which is just my thing 🙂 Here returning the WW ♥!


Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:19 am

Thanks, Paula! Thanks for linking up and for your compliments! Glad you like the pieces.

abbilbal February 29, 2012, 6:58 pm

Care mai de care mai fioroase sunt caracatiţele.

Eric Edelman February 29, 2012, 11:46 pm

Caracatiţe sunt, de asemenea, extrem de inteligent. După cum vedeţi, aceste caracatiţe trăiesc în curcubee.

Stacy Uncorked February 29, 2012, 9:59 pm

This is really cool!! 🙂

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 12:12 am

Thanks, Stacy!

Kathryn March 1, 2012, 9:15 am

I absolutely love this collection; what a cool concept to take nineteenth century engravings and turn them into a modern digital collage! This is one of my favourite WWs. 🙂

Eric Edelman March 1, 2012, 1:33 pm

Thanks, Kathryn! I appreciate your response and am very glad that you enjoyed the post. In fact, if you look at most of the other blog entries at Art of RetroCollage, you’ll see that I’ve been digitally combining old engravings in most of these pictures. I invite you to explore those at , which is the website on which I sell prints of these collages. Hope you had a great WW!

Samantha @ KreativeKaring March 2, 2012, 4:33 am

The pictures are really neat, and creepy! 🙂
thanks for stopping by my site and linking up for Wordless Wednesday! Hope you have a great weekend!

Eric Edelman March 2, 2012, 11:13 am

My pleasure, Samantha; I really enjoyed your WW post. Thanks for also linking up to Art of RetroCollage and for your kind comment! I’m glad you enjoyed the collages. Hope you have an excellent weekend too!

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